Family Solutions Teen Help

For Struggling & Troubled Teen & Young Adult Issues

Archive for the category “Arizona”

Exercise Caution During Spring Break – State Department Issues Warning About Mexico


It’s that time. The tanning beds are booked, getting an elliptical at the gym is as easy as winning the lottery and every hotel from Panama City to Key West to the sunny beaches in Mexico is booked to the maximum.  The sunny beaches of Mexico are some of the most popular places to go for Spring Break.

The state’s Department of Public Safety issued the warning, urging students to avoid travel to 14 of Mexico’s 31 states, according to The Associated Press. It’s the widest travel advisory issued by the U.S. since 2006.

The Department of Public Safety cites widespread violence as a growing problem, noting that rape is a common problem in resort areas. A popular Mexican vacation destination affected by the warning is Acapulco, where authorities warned Americans not to travel more than two blocks inland, according to ABC News.

The release notes that the State Department currently urges Americans to defer non-essential travel to 14 Mexican states, up from 10 in 2011. McCraw adds:

“The situation in Mexico today is significantly different than it was just a decade ago. Many crimes against Americans in Mexico go unpunished, and we have a responsibility to inform the public about safety and travel risks and threats. Based on the unpredictable nature of cartel violence and other criminal elements, we are urging individuals to avoid travel to Mexico at this time.”

US citizens who travel to Mexico despite the spring break warning are urged to register with their local consulate.

Spring Break is arguably one of the most fun weeks of the semester. Make sure your spring break stays fun.

The proverbial bell rings at the end of the last classes on Friday, and the only thing on everyone’s mind is getting out-of-town.

Thieves are not dumb – they know they will hit the jackpot of empty apartments, dorms and homes during Spring Break. Make sure to double-check all windows and doors are securely locked.

Almost half of all males and more than 40 percent of females reported being drunk to the point of throwing up or passing out at least once during Spring Break, according to a University of Wisconsin study. Everyone wants to have fun during break, but do not become one of these statistics. Watch all of your drinks being made, and do not accept an unopened drink. Keep your drink close to you at all times, and get a new one if you think someone might have tampered with it.

Do not swim if you have been drinking, and stay away from hotel balconies.

Never, ever drink and drive.

Penn State University surveyed 238 college students – one-third reported having sex while on spring break.

Of that third, 58 percent had sex with someone they had met during spring break, with infrequent or no condom use. To avoid having a spring break baby or contracting a non-returnable souvenir, make these safety decisions.

Abstinence is the only way to avoid long-term sexual consequences. When you do have sex, use a condom. Know your sexual limits and communicate them clearly. Use a buddy system. Do not leave your friends to go with someone you have just met, and do not let them leave either. When taking a long road trip, wear a seatbelt, make sure to always have gasoline and alternate drivers so no driver gets too tired. Always carry your ID. Make sure to carry cash in addition to your credit card. It is a good idea to carry a brochure for your hotel if you get drunk, lost or both, so that you can find help getting back to your hotel.

Always have a designated driver

Don’t mix cocktails and steamy hot tubs

Keep an eye on your drink

Stick with your friends

Sun + alcohol = ouch

Depending where you travel to this Spring Break, there may be different risks you may encounter. Have an amazing Spring Break!

What are Therapeutic Wilderness Programs?


Many social critics argue that today’s youth face more serious and critical risks than any previous generation. Parents are convinced that their children face a major crisis. Most experts will agree that violence in schools, deteriorating family structure, substance abuse, alarming media images, and gang activity put teens at risk. Wilderness programs use physical activity, exposure to the wilderness, and therapy to help participants through what might be considered “a rough patch” in their lives. Unlike juvenile detention centers, most wilderness programs, at least all the ones I recommend, do not use behavior modification strategies. Instead, they are non-confrontational and rely on exposure to nature to teach students about responsibility, reliability and resourcefulness.

Format

In most therapeutic wilderness programs, students join a group and stay in the field for a period of 42 to 74 days. At times it may be longer depending n the needs of the teen. Groups, which typically vary in size from four to 12 members, cook, engage  in activities that match their surroundings and time of year (weather), help with local community needs (when applicable for the student), gather kindling, engage in academics, learn new skills, meet with their therapist, participate in groups, write in their journal and write letters home.  Some programs focus on survival skills, such as making fires, cooking, first aid, minimal impact camping, hiking, route-finding and primitive living. Each participant has a responsibility to the group and themselves. Safety is ensured by expert trained field staff.

Although these programs do not work directly with insurance companies many parents have been successful in getting a portion, if not all, of the costs reimbursed through their insurance company. Upon completion, the program  can break down all therapeutic costs, which include (on the average) individual therapy weekly, group therapy twice weekly, and group processing daily. In addition, they will break down admissions fees, gear fees and residential fees when requested


Participants

Participants in wilderness therapy programs usually fall in the “at-risk youth” category. At-risk teens are in danger of making poor life decisions because of environmental, social, family and behavioral issues. Students are usually between 13 and 17; after that age, parents are no longer legally able to make decisions for their child. There are therapeutic wilderness programs for pre-teens as well as young adults, so everyone can benefit from this experience when needed.

The reasons a child is sent to a therapeutic wilderness program vary, but common issues include adoption struggles, clinical needs, drug and alcohol abuse, family challenges, gang involvement, low self-esteem, prescription drug abuse, running away, stealing, violence, depression, promiscuity, antisocial behavior and poor academic performance.

Theory

By removing children from their comfortable environment and bad influences, a therapeutic wilderness program removes distractions that can hinder insight while in therapy. Students do not have access to cell phones, cars, computers, televisions, their usual friends, family, drugs, or alcohol. They focus on things such as: admitting to what was and has really been going on at hem and in school; behaviors that have caused troubles; academic failure; feelings of depression; eating healthy; making amends with their family; new coping skills; open communication; responsibility for themselves and how their actions affect others. Therapeutic wilderness programs use a “no-resistance” approach, meaning force and confrontation are not used and children must improve based on the natural consequences of their actions.

Students quickly see and feel the impact of their actions.

Therapy

Therapeutic wilderness programs involve several forms of direct and indirect therapy. The experience of being in the wilderness — exposure to unfamiliar settings, learning new skills, and deprivation of normal everyday comfortable items — is itself a major component of therapy. Students work with licensed therapists to finish assignments and work through their problems; therapists do not usually stay with groups, but visit once or twice a week. Many wilderness programs also use less formal forms of group therapy to process lessons, improve communication and air grievances. Therapeutic wilderness programs are clinically driven treatment models.


Wilderness Programs

The Family Solutions Teen Help website has some of the best therapeutic wilderness programs listed.

Many are located in the West, where the expanses of wilderness are used as field areas for groups. Many are located in Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Oregon and Utah.

About the Author

Dore Frances, Ph.D .began her small independent therapeutic consulting practice as an Advocate for children with learning disabilities in Pacific Grove, California in 1988. In her work as a Child Advocate, she became familiar with the processes and strategies families develop to find appropriate educational matches for their children. He written work has appeared in Monterey County Herald, Seventeen Magazine, and numerous other journals. A frequent traveler to all programs and schools she recommends, she also has penned articles about different types of programs. Dr. Frances has a Master’s Degree in Child & Family Studies and a Doctorate of Applied Human Development in Child and Family Development with an emphasis in Diverse Families and a minor in Child Advocacy.

Horizon Family Solutions, LLC commitment to clients.

Blueprint Education


Blueprint Education creates curriculum and programs to build a solid education for students in any situation.

We offer over 220 fully accredited courses tied with innovative delivery strategies to reach junior and high school students in all 50 states and 20 countries around the world. Based in Glendale, Arizona, our nonprofit organization began in 1969 by providing correspondence learning to migrant worker families in Maricopa County.

With over 40 years of insight, we continue to find new ways to speak to the needs of students and educators in our home state and beyond.

We partner with individuals and institutions nationally and worldwide to provide curriculum designdistance learning,homeschool courses, and therapeutic education. Our innovative course programs also serve alternative education and charter schools in Arizona.

Post Navigation

%d bloggers like this: